Skip to main content
The Stream at Riverside

The Stream at Riverside

By Riverside Community Church
A Podcast produced by Riverside Community Church in Columbia, South Carolina.
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo


Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo


Spotify Logo


Matthew 13:24-43 - "The Patient Kingdom"
James continues our Parables series with a sermon on Matthew 13:24-43. You can find our sermon discussion questions at
June 19, 2022
Matthew 18:10-14 - "Protecting The Vulnerable (One Another)"
Andy continues our Parables series with a sermon on Matthew 18:10-14. You can find our sermon discussion questions at
June 12, 2022
Luke 11:1-13 - "Persistent Prayer"
Andy continues our Parables series with a sermon on Luke 11:1-13. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
June 05, 2022
Luke 14:12-24 - "An Open Invitation"
Wayne continues our Parables series with a sermon on Luke 14:12-24. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
May 29, 2022
Luke 8:16-18 - "The Lamp"
James continues our Parables series with a sermon on Luke 8:16-18. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
May 22, 2022
Matthew 13:44-46 - "The Hidden Kingdom"
James continues our Parables series with a sermon on Matthew 13:1-9. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
May 15, 2022
Matthew 13:1-9 - "Hearing Secrets"
James continues our Parables series with a sermon on Matthew 13:1-9. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
May 08, 2022
Mark 4:26-34 - "Slowly, Silently, Surely"
Timothy begins our new series, Parables of the Kingdom, with a sermon on Mark 4:26-34.
May 01, 2022
Acts 14:21-28 - "The Why of Church Planting"
On this Church Planting Sunday, JayWill shares a word from Acts 14:21-28. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at . NOTE: There are no sermon questions for this week.
April 24, 2022
John 2:13-22 - "The Last Great Sign"
Happy Easter...He is risen indeed!! James helps us celebrate this Resurrection Sunday with a sermon from John 2:13-22. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at .
April 17, 2022
Psalm 134 - "Blessings of the Blessed"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 134. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at .
April 10, 2022
Psalm 133 - "Our Mystic Sweet Communion"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 133. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at .
April 03, 2022
Psalm 132 - "God's Dwelling Place"
Wayne continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 132. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at .
March 27, 2022
Psalm 131 - "Weaning Ourselves...Off Ourselves"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 131. Our sermon discussion questions can be found at .
March 20, 2022
Psalm 130 - "Hoping In The Dark"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 130. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
March 13, 2022
Psalm 129 - "Afflicted but Victorious"
Wayne continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 129. You can find our sermon discussion questions at .
March 06, 2022
Psalm 128 - "#Blessed"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 128. Sermon discussion questions are available at .
February 27, 2022
Psalm 127 - "I Was Here"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 127. Sermon discussion questions are available at 
February 20, 2022
Psalm 126 - "We Are Glad!"
Wayne continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 126. Sermon discussion questions are available at:
February 13, 2022
Psalm 125 - "Perfect Peace for the Imperfect"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 125. 
February 06, 2022
Psalm 124 - "Maybe I'm Amazed"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 124.
January 30, 2022
Psalm 123 - "The Waiting"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 123.
January 23, 2022
Psalm 122 - "For the Good of God's House"
Wayne continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 122. 
January 16, 2022
Psalm 121 - "My Soul to Keep"
James continues our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 121.
January 09, 2022
Psalm 120 - "A Pilgrim's Lament"
James begins our Psalms of Ascent series with a sermon on Psalm 120.
January 02, 2022
Luke 2:40-52 - "In My Father's House"
James concludes our Advent series, "A Greater Story," with a sermon on Luke 2:40-52.
December 26, 2021
Luke 2:1-40 - "Every Heart Bears Witness"
James continues our Advent Series, "A Greater Story," with a sermon on Luke 2:1-40.
December 19, 2021
Luke 1:67-80 - "The Silence is Broken"
Wayne continues our Advent Series, "A Greater Story," with a sermon on Luke 1:67-80.
December 12, 2021
Luke 1:39-56 - "Enjoying Our Happy Ending Now"
James continues our Advent series, "A Greater Story", with a sermon on Luke 1:39-56.
December 05, 2021
Luke 1:5-35 - "Finding Our Story in God's Greater Story"
Landon begins our new Advent series, "A Greater Story", with a sermon on Luke 1:5-35.
November 28, 2021
Jude 20-25 - "Kept in Love"
Jarrian concludes our "Contending for the Faith" series with a sermon on Jude 20-25. *Due to technical difficulties, the audio quality of the recording may differ at different points throughout the sermon.
November 21, 2021
Jude 17-23 - "[Re]Member Jerusalem!"
James continues our Contending for the Faith series with a sermon on Jude 17-23. Sermon Discussion Questions: Read Jude 17-23 together. 1) Jude calls us to two commands here as part and parcel of the call to contend (v.3). The first is to remember the predictions of the apostles regarding “scoffers” in the last days. Read Paul’s prediction in 2 Timothy 3:1-7 and discuss where you’ve seen this in the church today. Which tendencies to see in yourself? 2)  Re-read vv.20-21. The second command is to keep ourselves in God’s love. Jude imagines we will do this by 1) building up one another, 2) praying in the Spirit, and 3) waiting for mercy. How might we more intentionally build one another up in this small group?  What would you like to see happen? How about prayer? Are there ways we would like to see our group grow in praying together? 3) Those who wait for mercy are much more prone to give it to others. Discuss vv.22-23 together. Do you need mercy in any of these areas? Have you shared that? Who in your circle of influence might need this mercy, and how can you show it?
November 14, 2021
Jude 8-16 - "A Tract for the Times"
James continues our Contending for the Faith series with a sermon on Jude 8-16. Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) Jude quotes from two ancient Jewish books (v.9, v.14-15) not found in the Old Testament. Is that a problem for believers who hold to a high view of Scripture? Where else in the New Testament do biblical authors quote from non-biblical sources as stating truth?  Why do you think they do this? 2) In vv.8-16, Jude spills a good amount of ink on slanderous talk and boasting (including both loud-mouthed and humble-bragging) when describing "these people" who "have crept in unnoticed,” (v.4). What do you think this kind of speech reveals about someone? 3) Re-read v.16. Why is grumbling and consistent discontentment such a glaring problem for a disciple of Jesus? Where do you honestly tend to grumble?
November 07, 2021
Jude 5-7 - "Divine Judgement and Redemptive Power"
Justin continues our Contending for the Faith series with a sermon on Jude 5-7. Sermon Discussion Questions 1) Jude calls us to contend for our faith, especially in the midst of those who reject God’s authority and twist the boundaries that he has given. How can you contend for the faith and help others, or yourself, stay within the bounds that God has given?  2) Jude uses the examples from the Old Testament as a means of shedding light on the way the false teachers were failing to live out their proclamation of faith in order to pursue their own desires. How are you tempted to pursue your own desires?  3) The three examples from the Old Testament that Jude uses shows how God is faithful to judge those who rebel against both him and the boundaries that he has given. How does God’s faithful judgement encourage you? How does his faithful judgement challenge you?
October 31, 2021
Jude 1-4 - "Contend!"
James begins our new series, Contending for the Faith, with a sermon on Jude 1-4. Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) Jude, brother to the famous James (Galatians 2:7-10; James 1:1), and half-brother to the even more well-known Jesus, writes to a church troubled by “certain people who have crept in unnoticed…[and] pervert the grace of our God into sensuality…” (v.4). They also make arrogant claims about authority to manipulate and exercise power over others for their own benefit (see v.6, 8-11, 16). In what ways are our churches at present troubled by these sorts of influencers and leaders? How does this distort the gospel? 2) Read the whole letter of Jude out loud together (it's only 25 verses). In light of the bookends (1:3-4, 20-23), what do you think “contend for the faith” looks like? What ought it NOT look like? 3) Earlier we asked how the gospel is being distorted by influencers and leaders who twist grace into license, and “spiritual authority" into self-promotion. How are we ourselves liable to the same errors?
October 24, 2021
Colossians 4:5-6 - "Wise and Winsome"
James gives us a sermon on Colossians 4:5-6.
October 17, 2021
Genesis 50:15-21 - "A Knotted Tapestry"
James concludes our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 50:15-21. Sermon Discussion Questions: Ice-breaker: What did the Calvinist say when he fell down the stairs? “I'm glad that’s over with.”  In contrast to this silly example, Joseph’s lofty view of God’s governance over history (see 50:20; 45:5-8) is breathtaking and grace-giving. 1) Read Genesis 50:15-21 and 45:1-8. What observations do you have about Joseph’s reply to his brothers? How do you see Joseph’s faith in a sovereign and good God shaping his gracious response toward them in both instances? 2)  Fatalism is the concept that a set destiny will happen no matter what decisions or actions a person takes. How does a biblical theology of divine sovereignty differ from fatalism? 3) How does acknowledging God’s sovereignty in our suffering help us attend to our pain carefully and hopefully?
October 10, 2021
Genesis 48:8-20 - "Father's Blessing"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 48:8-20. Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) God’s people are blessed to be a blessing (Gen.12:1-3; Ps.67). Sometimes it feels as if our suffering only gets in the way of our being a blessing to others. But as Jacob illustrates, it is more often the case that our sufferings qualify us to give a blessing.  How have you experienced this truth? 2) Re-read Ge.48:8-20. It is God’s pattern to reverse human systems of honor and give honor to “the last” and “least of these.” What hierarchies of honor does God’s kingdom contradict / upturn today? What ways can you act as an agent of God’s kingdom blessing the least and last in your circles of influence? 3) Jesus is culmination of Jacob’s blessing to Judah (Ge.49:8-12), and to all the tribes of Israel. He is the culmination of Abraham's blessing to the whole world! How is Jesus currently a blessing to you? In what ways is he your hope for future blessing now? (Be specific).
October 03, 2021
Genesis 43:1-14 - "Passing the Test"
Wayne continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 43:1-14.
September 26, 2021
Genesis 41:1-36 - "Dreams Do Come True"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 41:1-36.
September 19, 2021
Genesis 39:1-6 - "Judah and Joseph's J Curves"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 39:1-6.
September 12, 2021
Genesis 37:1-11 - "The Sins of the Fathers"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 37:1-11.
September 05, 2021
Genesis 35:9-15 - "Greater Than"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 35:9-15.
August 29, 2021
Genesis 32:22-29 - "Facing My Enemy"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 32:22-29.
August 22, 2021
1 Peter 4:7-11 - "Stewards of Grace"
We pause our Sojourning with God series as James gives us a sermon on 1 Peter 4:7-11.
August 15, 2021
Genesis 29:15-30 - "The User and the Used"
Wayne continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 29:15-30.
August 08, 2021
Genesis 28:10-22 - "The Amazing Dream of a Wretch"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 28:10-22.
August 01, 2021
Genesis 27:1-45 - "God's Blessing and Our Brokenness"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 27:1-45.
July 25, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 4:2-18
Chris continues our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 4:2-18.
July 21, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 4:2-18
Rosie continues our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 4:2-18.
July 20, 2021
Genesis 25:19-34 - "Treasuring the Grace of God"
James continues our Sojourning with God series with a sermon on Genesis 25:19-34.
July 18, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 3:18-4:1
James continues our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 3:18-4:1.
July 14, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 3:12-4:1
Jessica continues our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 3:12-4:1.
July 13, 2021
Genesis 24:1-14 - The Burials and Betrothals of Abraham's Family
Wayne continues our Sojourning with God sermon series with Genesis 24:1-14. 
July 11, 2021
Matthew 16:13-20 - "The Church Against Hell"
We pause our Sojourning with God series as JayWil gives us a sermon on Matthew 16:13-20. 
July 04, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 3:1-17
Stephen continues our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 3:1-17.
June 30, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 3:1-11
Katie continues our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 3:1-11.
June 29, 2021
Genesis 22:1-14 -"The Insanity of God"
James continues our Sojourning with God series as he preaches on Genesis 22:1-14.
June 27, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 2:6 - 2:23
Wayne continues our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 2:6-2:23.
June 23, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 2:4-23
Katie continues our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 2:4-23. 
June 22, 2021
Genesis 21:1-21 - "The Triumph of Grace"
James continues our Sojourning with God series as he preaches on Genesis 21:1-21.
June 20, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 1:15 - 2:5
Justin continues our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 1:15-2:5. 
June 16, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 1:15-2:3
Rosie continues our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 1:15-2:3.
June 15, 2021
Genesis 19:23-29 - "A Tale of Two Cities (Genesis 18-19)"
James continues our Sojourning with God series as he preaches on Genesis 19:23-29.
June 13, 2021
Children's Sermon - June 13, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on Genesis 18-19.
June 13, 2021
Men's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 1:1-14
James begins our men's summer Bible study with Colossians 1:1-14.
June 09, 2021
Women's Summer Bible Study - Colossians 1:1-14
Challie begins our women's summer Bible study with Colossians 1:1-14.  *Note: The first 20 minutes of the study was not recorded. 
June 08, 2021
Genesis 16:7-16 - "The God Who Hears and Sees"
Wayne continues our Sojourning with God series as he preaches on Genesis 16:7-16.
June 06, 2021
Children's Sermon - June 6, 2021
Alex gives the children's sermon on Genesis 16:7-16.
June 06, 2021
Genesis 15:1-8 - "Are We There Yet? Faith That Turns Into Sight"
Landon continues our Sojourning with God series as he preaches on Genesis 15:1-8.
May 30, 2021
Genesis 13:1-18 - "Risking for Faith"
1) Re-read 13:5-9 and 14:14-16. Abram was incredibly self-sacrificial toward Lot, trusting in God’s promises to him above what he could see or currently possess. What conflicts are you currently facing that challenge you toward self-sacrifice? How does God’s promised blessing in Christ enable you to make personal sacrifices?  2) Re-read 13:10-18. Apparently the promise land didn’t look as promising as the land of Sodom. What are some ways we’re tempted to walk by sight instead of faith, and trust in our own evaluation of “flourishing" rather than trust in God’s promised blessings?  3) Re-read 14:17-24. Abram’s trust in God’s ultimate provision gives him both gratitude for God’s present faithfulness and victory, and discernment about what is in fact God’s blessings vs. what is merely worldly benefits. Where are you wrestling to discern divine blessing from the compromising “spoils" of the world?
May 23, 2021
Children's Sermon - May 23, 2021
James gives the children's sermon on Genesis 13-14.
May 23, 2021
Genesis 11:27-12:3 - "Walking by Faith"
1) God calls Abram, a moon-worshipper from Ur (Joshua 24:2-3), to leave his homeland, his family network and ethnic heritage, and follow Him to only-God-knows-where to receive great blessing (12:1-3). How do you identify with Abram’s call and faith? (Hint: reflect on Galatians 3:5-9)  2) Abram claimed the promise land by faith - walking its breadth and length, building altars on it in the name of God - after God had appeared to the patriarch and promised him the land of Canaan (12:5-9). What does it look like today for us to claim the earth as the proper domain of the Lord’s reign and our future "home of righteousness” (2 Pet. 3:13)?  3) Very quickly, the promise to Abram appears threatened - or at least complicated - by a severe plague in the land. Abram makes his way to Egypt, and devises a dishonest strategy to save his own neck. Where do you feel God’s promise to you in Christ (ex. hope, peace, joy, deep connection to him and others, etc.) is threatened or complicated? How are you currently tempted to respond “by sight," and not by faith in God alone? How does God’s persistent faithfulness to us (even in our less-than-faithful moments) strengthen us to respond with faith?
May 16, 2021
Children's Sermon - May 16, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Genesis 11:27 - 12:3.
May 16, 2021
Galatians 5:25 - 6:10 - "Bearing the Weight"
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Paul urges the Galatians to not be conceited (5:26; 6:3-5), but, rather, bear one another’s burdens (6:2). What does conceit look like for you? How does it undercut our ability to serve others in love (5:13-15)?  2) Re-read 6:1. Have you had an experience like this, either as the one tangled in sin or the one “restoring” someone caught up in it? If so, how has it gone? If not, why do you think this command hasn’t been practiced in your life/circle?  3) We’re called to persevere in doing good to others (6:9) - serving everyone, but especially to the people of God (6:10). Yet we’re all tired. How can we “not grow weary in doing good,” according to the apostle?
May 09, 2021
Matthew 11:25-30 - "Active Rest"
Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) Jesus invites us to find rest under his yoke, learning from him (11:28-29). This might be called an "active rest." How have you experienced active rest in Christ?  2) Some of us need to step back and take a “rest" from serving in certain areas. Others need to find rest by stepping up to serve in Jesus’ name - even in their current fatigue. How can we know the difference, and determine what active rest in Jesus looks like for us?  3) How does Jesus' revealing his unique relationship to the Father (11:27) and his own heart - that it is gentle and lowly (11:29) - invite you to find rest in relationship with Him?
May 02, 2021
Children's Sermon - May 02, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on Matthew 11:25-30. 
May 02, 2021
Ephesians 4:1-6 - "Unity in the Midst of Mess"
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) There seems to be a misconception for many believers that the presence of conflict means the absence of unity. Why do you think this is? How does the truth of the gospel contradict this misconception?  2) Paul urges us in Ephesians 4:1-2 that we should "walk worthy" of our calling, "with "humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love". Are there any people (especially fellow believers) you know of that you need to bear with? How can you put into practice humility, gentleness, and patience with them?  3) The unity that Paul says we should be "eager to maintain" (verse 3) is derived from the oneness already on display by the Triune God. As Paul states in verses 4-6, there is "one body and one God and Father of all". In what ways can the oneness of the Trinity help us in our efforts to maintain unity with each other?
April 25, 2021
Children's Sermon - April 25, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Ephesians 4:1-6. 
April 25, 2021
1 John 1:5:16-21 - Apostasy and Assurance
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) John tells us our prayers for brothers/sisters who are caught in a sin “not leading to death” will be answered, granting life to those for whom we intercede (5:16-17; compare James 5:15-16, 19- 20). How does this encourage you in your intercessory prayers for others?  2) John says not all sin leads to death (5:17). But aren’t the wages of all sin death (Romans 6:23; James 1:15)? What do you understand by John’s phrase “sin leading to death”?  3) We’re told that the Son of God protects us from the evil one, who seduces the whole world (5:18-19). Jesus does this in part by revealing the true God to us (5:20). Yet at the same time we’re told to “guard” ourselves from idols/false images of God (5:21). How does trusting that Jesus shows us the truth and will protect us from Satan’s power lead us to take action now - repenting of and fleeing idolatry? What idols do you need to guard against?
April 18, 2021
Children's Sermon - April 18, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on 1 John 5:13-21.
April 18, 2021
1 John 5:13-15 - A Confident Prayer Life
Sermon Discussion Questions 1) Our confidence in prayer, John tells us (5:13-14), is an expression of our assurance of salvation. How have you experienced (or not experienced) confidence in your prayer life recently?  2) John says, "if we ask anything according to his will he hears us” (5:14). How do you understand “anything according to his will”?  3) Read John 15:15-16 together. Since Jesus has appointed YOU to bear lasting fruit for God, how does this challenge your prayer life / prayer list?
April 11, 2021
Children's Sermon - April 11, 2021
Alex gives the children's sermon on 1 John 5:13-15.
April 11, 2021
1 John 5:6-12 - God's Own Testimony
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) John writes about a threefold witness to Jesus. Namely, Jesus’ public baptism and crucifixion, and the ongoing witness of the Holy Spirit (5:6) - a witness only made possible because of Jesus’ resurrection and ascension (see John 16:7-8; 15:26). How do these three - water, blood and Spirit - continue to testify (5:7-8)?  2) John says God Himself testifies in this threefold witness (5:9; compare John 5:31-36; 10:24-25). Re-read 5:10. How have you experienced God's testimony?  3) If we have received God’s own testimony about Jesus, then, John tells us, we know we have eternal life (5:11-12). This is called “assurance” ... the whole point of John’s letter (read the next verse, 5:13). What is your experience of this "assurance of salvation”? How has it changed or fluctuated over time?
April 04, 2021
1 John 5:1-5 - "Don't Stop Believin"
JayWil continues our 1 John sermon series.
March 28, 2021
Children's Sermon - March 28, 2021
Alex gives the children's sermon on 1 John 5:1-5.
March 28, 2021
1 John 4:7-21 - Love's Perfection
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) John says “God is love” (4:8, 16). What does that mean? How do we know that’s true?  2) As an apostle and eye-witness of Jesus, John writes “we have come to know and believe the love God has for us.” How have you personally "come to know and believe" the love God has for you in Christ? How or when do you doubt it?  3) "Perfect love casts out fear” (4:18). How have you experienced love being perfected within you? If you’re a Christian, what ways have you slipped into an 'imperfect' fear of judgment? How can you “assure your heart before him” (3:19) during those times? If you are not a Christian, how does God’s promise of perfect love and acceptance in Christ address your fears?
March 21, 2021
Children's Sermon - March 21, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 4:7-21.
March 21, 2021
1 John 4:1-6 - A Call to Discernment
Landon continues our sermon series through 1 John. 
March 14, 2021
Children's Sermon - March 14, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 4:1-6. 
March 14, 2021
1 John 3:11-24 - Love Indeed
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) If our hearts condemn us, we might have sins to confess in his presence (1Jn.1:8-2:2). Sometimes, however, our hearts still condemn us, even after we’ve confessed and received forgiveness. How then can we comfort our hearts before him? Read 1John 3:19-20 and discuss.  2) Our actions of loving one another “in deed and in truth” (3:17-18) provide a weighty confirmation of God’s love abiding in us (3:19). How have you experienced sacrificial love within the church, both in mundane and extraordinary ways?  3) John speaks of God’s love abiding in us (3:17). It flows in us and through us. But the fountainhead from which it flows is God’s singular act of love in Christ: “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us,” (3:16a; see also 4:9-10; John 15:13). Having received this divine love by faith, we are now obligated to "lay down our lives for the brothers and sisters” (3:16b; see also 4:11; compare 2Co.5:14-15). How has God’s love for you in Christ compelled you recently to love someone else sacrificially?
March 07, 2021
Children's Sermon - March 7, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on 1 John 3:11-24.
March 07, 2021
1 John 3:4-10 - Christian Is As Christian Does
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) John defines all sin as lawlessness (3:4) – a vicious revolt against God’s express will. What are ways you have sanitized or minimized your own sins?  2) The whole purpose of Christ’s first appearance was to wage war on sin and Satan (3:5, 8; see also Hebrews 2:14-15). Jesus successfully conquered the power and penalty of our sin at the cross and empty tomb. But what he has worked for and in us, we are now to work out. How are you actively waging war on your sin now?  3) The apostle argues that true Christians do not continue in sin (3:6), and even that they cannot continue in sin (3:9) because of the radically transformative relationship they have with God. Yet clearly Christians continue to sin (see 1:8, 10). What does this mean then? How have you experienced what John is describing?
February 28, 2021
Children's Sermon - February 28, 2021
Alex gives the children's sermon on 1 John 3:4-10.
February 28, 2021
John 6:1-13, 25-27, 35
Ant gives a sermon on John 6:1-13, 25-27, 35.
February 21, 2021
Children's Sermon - February 21, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on John 6:1-13, 25-27, 35. 
February 21, 2021
1 John 2:28-3:3 - Confidence On That Day
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) How do you imagine the last day of history will be for you? Does seeing Jesus face to face fill you with dread or comfort?  2) What does it mean to you that, because you trust in His eternal Son, God now calls you His own, beloved child? How does this comfort you and give you confidence?  3) Hope is often understood as simply “wishful thinking,” like wishing upon a star. But in the New Testament hope is certain, a firm anchor that grounds us (see Hebrews 6:18-19) and gives us assurance. How does our sure hope in Christ’s glorious return actually purify us (1John 3:3)?
February 14, 2021
Children's Sermon - February 14, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 2:28-3:3.
February 14, 2021
1 John 2:18-27 - Live Not By Lies
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Deception is a real danger for all of us - no less so now than when John wrote (2:18-19, 2:26). Jesus said that the deception in the last days will be so powerful as to "lead astray, if possible, the elect.” Our Lord concludes: "But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand,” (Mark 13:22- 23). Have you yourself ever fallen into deep deception? Has a friend or family member fallen so far as to even walk away from faith? How has that affected you?  2) The lie of the antichrist is fundamentally a denial of Jesus Christ. That is to say, it denies that Jesus of Nazareth - born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate - is the eternal Son of God, the Holy One (as Peter confesses in John 6:69). How does the American gospel of 'upward mobility' deny Jesus’ self-emptying incarnation and death (see Phil.2:1-8)?  3) How does the gospel word “abide” in us now (see 2:14)? How do we follow John’s command to “let that which you heard from the beginning abide” or continue to "dwell” in us (2:24)?
February 07, 2021
Children's Sermon - February 7, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on 1 John 2:18-27.
February 07, 2021
1 John 2:15-17 - Love Not the World
Sermon Discussion Questions 1. John lists three things in 2:15-17 that constitute "the world" (desires of flesh, desires of eyes and pride of life). How are you currently wrestling with these tendencies of the sinful flesh?  2. The Riverside elders are calling the church to a fast during Lent (see link). How do you feel about this? How is God calling you to "put off the flesh" and "put on Christ?" How can we help each other practically do that? See Colossians 3:1-17 as a helpful launching point for this concept.  3. Part of the world system includes the Satan, "the ruler of this world" (John 12:31), which the modern church does not teach much about. How has that impacted your view of sin, your flesh and the world? What lies and half-truths has he tempted you to believe about yourself and God? (Help others consider truth from the Word to combat these lies and half-truths).  4. Loving the world is bad investment strategy, because it is passing away. Loving God is worth it because he will fulfill his promise to bring his kingdom in full (Rev. 21). What lesser kingdoms are you tempted to put your hope in? How does the hope of Jesus' kingdom (Rev. 21) help you endure today? 
January 31, 2021
Children's Sermon - January 31, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 2:15-17.
January 31, 2021
1 John 2:7-14 - The Old Commandment, Ever New
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) To love one another as we ought is to love one another with our our all (“we ought to lay down our lives for one another,” 3:16). Where do you find yourself “holding back,” in self-protection or self-preservation in ways that are ultimately unloving? What are you afraid you will lose?  2) How can we discern the difference between a Christ-like love that gives our whole selves up to God for the flourishing of one another, and a disordered love that sacrifices ourselves to one another, and is finally idolatrous or man-fearing?  3) We often feel we cannot love as we ought, for lack of love in ourselves. How does 1 John 2:8 give the lie to this fear as those united to Christ by faith?
January 24, 2021
Children's Sermon - January 24, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 2:7-14.
January 24, 2021
1 John 2:3-6
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) John, time and again, assures us that it is possible to truly know that we know God, and also gives key indicators that we can test ourselves and others by (1 John 3: 3-5). In the midst of so much misinformation and confusion about what is actually true (regarding current events), and about who is actually “on the Lord’s side”, how does this truth reassure you?  2) Can you think of a time in your life (past or present) where you’ve been the one referred to in 1 John 2:4, the one who “talked the talk”, but didn’t “walk the walk”? - If in the past, how did God convict you and lead you to repentance? - If you feel convicted presently about this, feel free to confess and share with your small group family.  3) John states in 1 John 2:6 that “Whoever says He abides in Him ought to walk in the same way in which He walked.” In a manner of speaking, John is really saying that it’s not possible to walk like Jesus unless you walk with Him. In what ways can we encourage each other to walk more closely with Jesus?
January 17, 2021
Children's Sermon - January 17, 2021
Nate gives the children's sermon on 1 John 2:3-6.
January 17, 2021
1 John 1:5 - 2:2
Sermon Questions  1) John summarizes the message he received from Jesus simply as: "God is light, in whom is no darkness at all” (1:5). What darkness do you sometimes fear might linger in God? Be honest.  2) What does it mean that Christ is our propitiation (2:2)? How is God thereby both “faithful and just to forgive us our sins” (1:9)? Why is this so important for us to understand if we are to walk in the confidence of being forgiven?  3) John writes that “if we confess our sins,” then "we have fellowship with one another,” and so are cleansed from all our sin and unrighteousness (1:9, 7). How do we become a safe place to confess our sins together - to God and to one another (James 5:16)? That is, how do we cultivate true fellowship in the light together?
January 10, 2021
Children's Sermon - January 10, 2021
Alex gives the children's sermon on 1 John 1:5-2:2.
January 10, 2021
1 John 1:1-4
Sermon Discussion Questions 1) Read and discuss the following quote from J.I. Packer: "Once you become aware that the main business that you are here for is to know God, most of life’s problems fall into place of their own accord. The world today is full of sufferers from the wasting disease which Albert Camus focused as Absurdism (‘life is a bad joke’), and from the complaint which we may call Marie Antoinette’s fever, since she found the phrase that describes it (‘nothing tastes’). These disorders blight the whole of life: everything becomes at once a problem and a bore, because nothing seems worthwhile. But absurdist tapeworms and Antoinette’s fever are ills from which, in the nature of the case, Christians are immune, except for occasional spells of derangement when the power of temptation presses their mind out of shape-and these, by God’s mercy, do not last.”  2) How can we know that we know God - that is, we not only know about Him, truthfully, but personally - and so have eternal life? (See also 1John 5:13; John 17:3).  3) John writes to believers (in Asia Minor?) “concerning the word of life,” (v.1) not only so that they might have fellowship with them and, even more amazingly, the Trinity (v.3), but also so that “our joy might be complete,” (v.4). Why does including/affirming these believers’ into fellowship with God and the apostles bring joy to John? How have you experienced this joy?
January 03, 2021
Children's Sermon - January 3, 2021
Stacy gives the children's sermon on 1 John 1:1-4. 
January 03, 2021
John 1:18 - Seeing God in the Face of Christ
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Read 1 Timothy 6:15-16. What does it mean that God has not and cannot be seen?  2) Read Hebrews 1:1-4. Unlike the prophets of old, who truly revealed God in part, Jesus Christ has “fully explained” God to us (John 1:18) - specifically in His incarnate life, death and resurrected glory. If we want to see God, in so far as we humans can see the fullness of His self-revelation, we must attend to the details of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. What keeps you from attending those wonderful and full expressions of divinity? What distracts us from His glory? Where does unbelief blind us?  3) How can we as individual disciples of Christ attend more fully to Christ’s glory - that is, the details of his life, death, resurrection (as portrayed in the Gospels) and his heavenly reign (as unpacked in remainder of the New Testament, as well as predicted and anticipated by the Old Testament)?
December 27, 2020
John 1:14-18 - "Godful"
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Read Psalms 42-43 out loud. How have you sought and experienced the life-giving presence of God this year? 2) How have you “beheld” the glory of Jesus in your life (hint: any transformational encounters with Jesus' “grace and truth”)?  3) The Word became flesh to fill our whole human existence with His divine goodness and glory. What aspects of your “flesh” are you most longing for Jesus to fill-up and/or redeem?
December 20, 2020
Children's Sermon - December 20, 2020
Alex gives the children's sermon on John 1:14-18.
December 20, 2020
Repent! For the Gift of Faith is Near - John 1:6-13
Pastor Landon Jones
December 13, 2020
John 1:4-5, 9
JayWil continues our Advent series in the prologue of John.
December 06, 2020
Children's Sermon - December 6, 2020
Nate gives the children's sermon on John 1:1-5.
December 06, 2020
John 1:1-18
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) What we believe reveals a lot about us. What are some popular beliefs that reflect well on us in our current cultural climate? What are some unpopular beliefs that don’t reflect so well?  2) A.W. Tozer famously wrote, “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” More specifically, what we think about Christ as the pre-existent Son incarnated for us and for our salvation is the most important thing about us. What comes into your mind when you think about the Word who was made flesh to make us children of God?  3) Many times, in response to a text of Scripture, we ask: so what? The "so what?” of John 1:1-18 seems to be not only that we believe, but that we might see the glory of Christ (1:14). To adore and stand in awe of Him… How does this beautiful Word as the full self-expression of God lead you into deeper worship of God?
November 29, 2020
Children's Sermon - November 29, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on John 1:1-3.
November 29, 2020
Children's Sermon - November 22, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 9:11-15.
November 22, 2020
Amos 9:11-15 - Post Tenebras Lux
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) James cites Amos 9:11-12 in his corroboration of Peter’s ministry experience among the Gentiles with prophetic testimony. Why do you he think he chose this passage of Scripture among all the prophetic texts that spoke of God’s future blessing / inclusion of the Gentiles?  2) According to Amos 9:12, God’s restoration of David’s dynasty and kingdom (9:11) was in part "so that the remnant of humanity and all the nations called by my name might seek the Lord.” How are we currently seeking to actively welcome outsiders into the fold of God’s people?  3) The Lord’s Table or Communion is the ordinance / sacrament Jesus entrusted to the church to celebrate and enjoy his incredible hospitality of grace toward us “until He comes” (1Co.11:26). How ought the regular celebration of this ritual meal shape the culture of God’s people? How do you plan to enjoy His hospitality with the saints next week, November 29th (appropriately during the Thanksgiving weekend), at the Lord's Table?
November 22, 2020
Amos 9:1-10
JayWil continues our sermon series on Amos.
November 15, 2020
Children's Sermon - November 15, 2020
Alex gives our children's sermon on Amos 9:1-10.
November 15, 2020
Amos 8:1-14
Wayne continues our sermon series on Amos. 
November 08, 2020
Children's Sermon - November 8, 2020
Nate gives the children's sermon on Amos 8:1-14.
November 08, 2020
Amos 7:10-17
Discussion Questions: 1) Read the the Westminster Longer Catechism Questions 144 and 145 to reflect on where this searchlight most exposes and challenges us. 2) Have you ever been slandered or misrepresented? How have you responded?  3) The call to follow Christ ensures slander, misunderstanding, and rejection from the world. But this is to be blessed, according to Jesus (see Matthew 5:10-11). How might you overcome fear of social rejection among your peers and lean into kingdom blessing in the coming months?
November 01, 2020
Children's Sermon - November 1, 2020
Daniel gives the children's sermon on Amos 7:10-17.
November 01, 2020
Children's Sermon - October 25, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 7:1-9.
October 25, 2020
Amos 7:1-9
Discussion Questions:  1) The prophets’ role included interceding or mediating on behalf of the people to whom God sent them (see Ge.18:22-33; 20:17; Ex.32:1-35). As the true Prophet (Acts 3:19-26), Christ is our great intercessor before the throne of God (Rom.8:34). Knowing you have this advocate at the Father’s right hand, what are you grateful for specifically? Name one prayer or request that you’re asking Christ to mediate for you now?  2) Who are you interceding for in prayer currently? How can we as a SG be praying with you? (See 1Tim.2:1-6)  3) Mercy means mediation on behalf of the guilty. But justice means the unmitigated punishment of all evil. How does the truth that every crime, every evil, every injustice, will be perfectly judged in and through Christ give you hope and courage?
October 25, 2020
Children's Sermon - October 18, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 6:1-14.
October 18, 2020
Amos 6:1-14
James continues our sermon series on Amos. Sermon discussion questions: 1. Discuss the following summary of Amos 6:1-2: "Woe to the self-secure; for they will never be safe." How does our pride lull us into complacency and a false security?   2. Discuss the following summary of Amos 6:3 (see also 5:18): "Woe to the ever-optimistic; for their whole glass shall be empty." How does the false promise of inevitable progress or unconditioned blessing dull our moral senses?  3. Discuss the following summary of Amos 6:4-7: "Woe to the self-indulgent; for their party will come to a sudden end." How can our love of comfort atrophy our repentance?
October 18, 2020
Children's Sermon - October 11, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 5:18-27.
October 11, 2020
Amos 5:18-27
JayWil continues our sermon series on Amos.
October 11, 2020
Hard Conversations: The Church and Politics
Join Josh Parks, Landon Jones, JayWill Wilson, and James Walden in an open and honest conversation about the church and politics.
October 09, 2020
Children's Sermon - October 4, 2020
Daniel gives the children's sermon on Amos 5:1-17.
October 04, 2020
Amos 5:1-17
JayWill continues our sermon series on the book of Amos.
October 04, 2020
Children's Sermon - September 27, 2020
Nate gives the children's sermon on Amos 4:1-13.
September 27, 2020
Amos 4:1-13 - Trifling with the Almighty
Sermon Discussion Questions  1. In their extravagant comfort, the privileged women of Northern Israel had grown quite complacent to the plight of poor, even complicit in their oppression (4:1). In what ways are we in danger of growing similarly complacent and perhaps complicit in prospering from the disadvantaging of the poor and disenfranchised?  2. What personal idols or self-imposed rituals are we tempted to turn to in order to self-atone for our guilty consciences as comfortable and complacent people (4:4-5)?  3. The past 6 months have been difficult for us all. How have you turned to self-reliance rather than repentance and God reliance during the COVID-19 pandemic (compare 4:6-11)? What might deeper repentance and God-reliance look like for you in the present moment?
September 27, 2020
Children's Sermon - September 20, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 3:1-15.
September 20, 2020
Amos 3:1-15
JayWill continues our sermon series covering the book of Amos. 
September 20, 2020
Children's Sermon - September 13, 2020
Stacy gives the children's sermon on Amos 2:4-16.
September 13, 2020
Amos 2:4-16
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Satan’s lies aren’t anything new, and they’ve unfortunately been all too effective for far too long. If we’re honest, we’ve been like Judah (Amos 2:4-5) in that we’ve bought into some of the same idolatrous lies that many of our ancestors have, particularly here in America. Are there any specific idols and/or lies that have deceived you in your lifetime? How have they affected you?  2) God doesn’t sugarcoat His indictment(s) of Israel (v. 6-8). What makes their transgressions even more blatant is that they were done in spite of God’s obvious protection (v. 9), liberation and provision (v.10), and rejected efforts to warn them (v.11-12). What elements of God’s goodness have you seen in your life despite some of your most blatant transgressions?  3) In verses 13-16, God uses simile and metaphor to communicate the heaviness of His judgement on His people. Israel will be “pressed down”, unable to escape or fend it off with their usual means of self-preservation. We, like Israel, were deserving of such heavy judgement. But thankfully, the full weight of His judgement has been borne by another, namely Jesus Christ. How does the truth of God’s judgement weigh on you? How does the truth that Jesus has borne that weight also weigh on you?
September 13, 2020
Children's Sermon - September 6, 2020
Daniel gives the children's sermon on Amos 1:3-2:3.
September 06, 2020
Amos 1:3-2:3 - Justice for All
Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) In what ways do you identify with the question from Psalm 94, regarding unaddressed injustice:   3 O Lord, how long shall the wicked, how long shall the wicked exult? 4 They pour out their arrogant words; all the evildoers boast. 5 They crush your people, O Lord, and afflict your heritage. 6 They kill the widow and the sojourner, and murder the fatherless; 7 and they say, “The Lord does not see; the God of Jacob does not perceive.” How does the Psalmist’s answer comfort or challenge you?  8 Understand, O dullest of the people! Fools, when will you be wise? 9 He who planted the ear, does he not hear? He who formed the eye, does he not see? 10 He who disciplines the nations, does he not rebuke?  2) Consider the "crimes against humanity” and “war crimes” enumerated in 1:3-2:3 - crimes that are ultimately against God Himself - for which the nations are culpable: “threshing” one’s enemy with iron and stone implements, deportations and slave trade, acting with merciless malice toward the vulnerable in warfare, expanding one’s territory by conquest, ripping open pregnant women, and desecrating corpses. What significant crimes might we be complicit in as Americans? (If the group struggles to answer here, perhaps suggest the large-scale participation of Americans in human trafficking through use of online pornography).  3) God is patient and long-suffering ... but His patience with the evil of the nations comes to an end in the act of judgment. In the cross of Christ, the sins God had previously "passed over" are reckoned with in devastating judgment (Rom.3:25-26; 8:3). We look back to the cross to find both the justice of God served and a portent of the sure judgment to come. How is this sobering? How is this hopeful and comforting for those who’ve found refuge at the cross?
September 06, 2020
Children's Sermon - August 30, 2020
Nate gives the children's sermon on Amos 1:1-2 and 7:14-15.
August 30, 2020
Amos 1:1-2 - The Burden Bearer of Bad News
Sermon Discussion Questions  1. In 1st Kings 11:9-13 and Amos 7:14-16, we see both Solomon and the people of Israel reject correction from the Lord. In the absence of the biblical prophets, how do we hear and receive correction from God? What obstacles in your life keep you from recognizing your sin and turning from it?  2. A reoccurring theme in our text is that those who turn their hearts away from the Lord often become oppressors of the weak or complacent to the marginalized. But the Lord is roaring from Zion as He tries to bring our attention to how our broken worship colors our sense of justice. How can we as a small group worship together through pursuing justice (Micah 6:8)?
August 30, 2020
Living Into Christ - Ephesians 4:25-5:2
Sermon Discussion Questions  1. What do you remember about your baptism? How does the picture painted throughout out the New Testament of taking off the old and putting refract through your own memory of your baptism, or others you’ve witnessed? How do you understand the ongoing call to “live into your baptism”?  2. The church in Christ is holy and without any spot or wrinkle “in the heavenly places, where Christ is seated." But the church on earth has warts, blemishes and plenty of wrinkles. How do you negotiate the chasm between the reality “in Christ” and the empirical reality at the present moment? What does it mean for you to live “into our unity” as the church?  3. God doesn’t just tell us He loves us, and then command us to turn around and love others. He shows us in the dramatic portrayal of Christ crucified for us in the gospel, and then pours His love into hearts directly through the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). Describe an experience when you’ve vividly known God’s love for you in Jesus. Have you been nourished by that love recently? Are you growing in that experiential knowledge? What might be inhibiting your experience of God’s love for you in Jesus?
August 23, 2020
Gospel Shaped Family: Come to Jesus Meeting
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) What does it mean for us as a church (and small group) to be a part of a Gospel-Shaped Family [Church] with an ancient heritage? In what ways should we be careful to put community in its proper place? In what ways have you sought for community to satisfy you more the than Lord of the community?  2) How is God calling you to maturity as a member of this Gospel Shaped Family? What things do you want help to put away? What things do you want help to grow in? In what ways do our hearts drift from trusting God, and His Word?  3) Spend some time diagnosing the state of your hearts. Where do you sense a heart worship problem in your life? How is God calling you to back to Him in worship? What does “making peace with 2020” look like for you?
August 16, 2020
Gospel Mission Together- Ephesians 3:1-13
JayWill continues our sermon series on exploring the church’s values.
August 09, 2020
Gospel Centrality - #Blessed - Ephesians 1:3-14
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Paul tells us in this passage that the God behind the world is not only fundamentally good, but loves us and has purposed our everlasting good in Christ. This means that, no matter how unsettling or hard things become in this life, we have every reason as believers to be at peace, deeply grateful and wildly hopeful. How do you relate to this implication?  2) If what God is doing in the world at present is reconciling all things to himself in Jesus Christ (vv.9-10), how does this relate to your present vocation? To your family? To your small group? To your current evangelistic and discipleship efforts? To your prayer life?  3) What are barriers to you, at present, in seeing the hope (Eph.1:18) that is yours in Christ, and experiencing the joy of your position as one elected (1:4), predestined (1:5, 11), appointed for an inheritance (1:11, 14), and forever loved in Christ (v.4-6)?
August 02, 2020
Mark 15:40 - 16:8 - The Resurrection and Our Response
Sermon by Josh Parks.
July 26, 2020
Mark 15:33 -39 - In The Dark
Sermon Discussion Questions Have you ever felt abandoned by someone who was supposed to love you and care for you?  How have you responded to that abandonment? How does Jesus’ suffering abandonment at the cross for you (both “in your place” and in order to set a pattern you can follow) heal you in your abandonment? Martin Luther famously declared that we often fail to see Christ’s glory hidden in suffering, and so miss God himself. How do we tend to overlook God in our own weakness and shame? In what ways do we fail to see God in the sufferings of others? Christ’s death on the cross is the “crux” of God’s witness to the world (see John 12:32). How are you presently holding out this crux to those around you - both in your successes and in your weaknesses?
July 19, 2020
Mark 15:15-32 - Excruciating
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Growing up, how did you experience being mocked? When was “ribbing” in good fun, and felt safe to you? When did it cross the line and felt shaming? Was there any one mock that was particularly hurtful?  2) Among your circle of friends or within your family, who - within or outside that circle - do you mock on occasion? When does it cross the line into derision?  3) Jesus experienced ridicule, jeering, humiliation, and shame in his crucifixion in order to remove our shame before God and one another. How do you see the mockings you’ve both received and given cast onto Jesus on Calvary - absorbed and carried away?
July 12, 2020
Mark 15:1-15 - On Trial
Sermon Discussion Questions 1) Dan Allendar says scapegoating is "so much more than blame-shifting. We’re talking about the reality that we not only want to blame, we not only project, we not only identify somebody else as the fault, but we want them to suffer.” What scapegoats do conservatives often identify and lambast? What scapegoats do progressives typically target and defame? What scapegoats are you tempted to fear and loath? How does Jesus expose our hearts in this? 2) Flannery O’Conner famously said that the South is not so much Christ-centered as Christ-haunted. Where are you Christ-haunted? How are you tempted to “increase, so that Jesus must decrease," or escape his superior glory and authority for fear of humiliation? 3) What does delighting in Christ’s unspeakable glory look like for you? (Think of how we’re all in Barabbas’ place)  How can you bring Christ’s glory to shine on more of your life and conversations?
July 05, 2020
Mark 14:26-72 - Is This Your King?
Sermon Discussion Questions  1. In Mark 14:26-28 we see the disciples go to Mount Olive with Jesus to sing praises after communion and right after they finish singing of the Glory of God Jesus informs them, they will fall away. Showing that the same ones whose lips sung of His Glory would also, due to fear abandon Him with their lips. How have you who also sing of his glory turned and abandon him with your lips? What made you so quick to abandon Him?  2. On the night Jesus was betrayed, we see in Matthew 26:50 Jesus still considers Judas a friend. He never denied His relationship with him even after being abandon and betrayed by Him. When we fail, we often believe Jesus turns His back on us, but seeing this interaction should make us think otherwise. Why do you believe when we fail, we fall so quickly into despair and not repent?  3. Unlike the disciples who all scattered because of fear, when Jesus was taken captive, we see a calm and collected Savior. He was completely in control and knew the power that He possessed promising one day all would see Him on His throne seated in Power. Knowing that Jesus who has overcome the world (John 16:32-33) and won the victory over death (1 Corinth 15:55-57) how does that encourage us run back to Jesus when we fail Him? How can we as a group help each other continuously repent and turn back to Jesus?
June 28, 2020
Hard Conversations: Racial Injustice and Reconciliation
A special collaboration between The Stream at Riverside and Riverside members Wayne and Felicia Penn from the podcast Marriage at Golgotha ( and special guest Dr. Gabe Fluher from First Presbyterian Church.  A discussion on the church's response to racial injustice in the wake of the killing of George Floyd and widespread protests.  Josh Parks, James Walden, and JayWill Wilson return. Recorded on June 5, 2020.
June 23, 2020
Mark 14:22-26 - Guess Who's Coming To Dinner
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) "The Son of man came eating and drinking.” Explain this phrase from Jesus in the context of his ministry and teachings. What might Jesus’ radical "table fellowship" look like today? How does yours compare? What next step can you take in becoming more hospitable?  2) Jesus doesn’t only offer us a seat at his table - as incredible as that is. He offers us His whole self at the table. What does the Lord’s Supper mean to you? How do you understand the words of the Heidelberg Catechism, when it says that, at the table, Jesus “himself nourishes and refreshes my soul to everlasting life with his crucified body and shed blood”?  3) Jesus left us a feast - a dinner party - as one of the enduring sacraments of the church. How amazing is that? How might we wisely celebrate this meal together as a small group in the coming weeks?
June 21, 2020
Mark 14:12-21 - Jesus, Weak and Strong
Sermon Discussion Questions 1) Throughout the surprising events “on the night that he was betrayed,” Jesus remains “in the know” and in control. From the detailed preparations for the Passover, to his arrest and abandonment by the Twelve, Jesus has total command of the situation ... as unknown, unsettling and upsetting as it was to others. If Jesus is just as sovereign in your life now as He was among His disciples then, how does this change your outlook on your present challenges? 2) Judas "scapegoated" Jesus, and sold him out for a relatively small amount of money.  What is “scapegoating”?   Who have you scapegoated in the past, or who do you tend to scapegoat now, and why? 3) In the present debate on race in America, there is a cacophony of voices crying out.  We all need to listen (James 1:19-20).  Some of us need to share. We all need to listen to Jesus’ voice first and foremost in Scripture (James 1:21).  Who else might you need to hear out?  Have some of us stopped listening? Why? Have some who need to talk stopped talking? Why?
June 14, 2020
Mark 14: 1-11 - The Powerful, the Pious, and the Poured Out
Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) We have all, to some extent, wasted portions of our life against Christ. How or in what ways are you willing to share with the group? How has or how might God redeem these wasted aspects? 2) As Christians, we have decided to “waste” ourselves, that is, to spend our lives, to pour ourselves out for Jesus. He is worth it…right? How is Jesus worth it for you?  What about Jesus inspires your love, your devotion? 3) What if you pour out everything you have - your very best years, your very best efforts, your heart, your soul - for Christ, and no one remembers you in 30-50 years. No one. Only God remembers. Will it still be worth it? (See Hebrews 6:10)
June 07, 2020
Humility, Harmony, and Hope - Romans 15:1-7
In this sermon, we step aside from our sermon series in Mark's Gospel to consider our hearts and attitudes about regathering as a church family. Sermon Discussion Questions: 1) Read 1 Timothy 1:5. This is the goal of all of our instruction: love from a pure heart, a clear conscience and a sincere faith. In what areas do you think you tend to have a weakened faith or particularly delicate conscience? Or where might your conscience be calloused? How might we together help you fortify your faith or recalibrate your conscience?  2) What are your biggest concerns about regathering? What are your concerns about not regathering? How can we as a group begin regathering now? What steps can we start taking now?  3) Bearing with one another is easier said than done. What are some "pet peeves,” personal biases, or preferences that we need to name and/or confess in order to be in deeper harmony as a small group?
May 31, 2020
Mark 13:24-37 - How To Prepare For The End Of The World
For a deeper dive into the Olivet Discourse, check out this blog post. Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Because we know that the Word of God is true and surely won’t pass away, Christ the King will certainly return. What could be preventing you from believing this taught? How can seeking the truth push you closer in having faith in Christ?  2) While Christ didn’t reject his disciples for falling asleep, he did rebuke them for not keeping watch during the night. Where have we not kept watch over ourselves? How can we be “woke disciples” and live an everyday life of obedience in light of Christ’s sudden and certain return?  3) The return of Christ also brings the promise of hope with the restoration of the King and his elect. What are you longing to see with the Return of the King? How can we live with the light of this hope in mind?
May 24, 2020
Mark 13:1-23 - Let the Reader Understand
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) In Mark 13:5-11 Jesus warns us that scary times will shake the whole earth before the end (“these are the beginning of the birth pangs,” v.8). Our role in this time of global tribulation is to bear witness (vv.9-13). How does this challenge you during the COVID-19 pandemic?  2) The prophecy of Daniel regarding the “abomination of desolation” apparently involves multiple applications in history. Ex. the abomination of Antiochus Epiphanes in 167 BC (Daniel 11:31), and the desolation of Titus in AD 70 (Daniel 9:26). How do you understand the final fulfillment of this abomination of desolation (Daniel 9:27; 11:36; 12:1-11) Jesus references in Mark 13:14 to relate to Paul’s teachings regarding the “man of lawlessness” in 2 Thessalonians 2:1- 8? Why is this important to our expectation regarding the return of Christ?  3) Many false “Christs/Messiahs” emerge during a crisis. What “messiahs” are we presently looking to as a culture (note 1John 2:18)? How does Jesus alone offer us hope during our present and future crises?
May 17, 2020
Mark 12:28-34 - The One Thing
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Do you feel overwhelmed by all the things we’re “supposed to do”? Discuss our exhaustion, and how it leads us to despair or even resignation. How is Jesus’ distillation of all the Law and Prophets into two, simple commandments liberating? To quote St. Augustine: "Our precept is this: love, and do what you will.” Where does it feel even harder?  2) How does the costliness of the commandments expose our bankruptcy? Where do you feel most exposed these days? Where are you crying out for grace? (Augustine also wrote: “O Lord, give what you command, and command what you will.”)  3) How does Jesus’ fulfillment of the great commandments lead to our fulfilling the law ourselves through the Holy Spirit (hint: see Romans 5:5-8; 1John 4:7-12)?
May 10, 2020
Sermon Q&A 1
Landon Jones, Josh Parks, James Walden and JayWill Wilson tackle all of the sermon questions that weren't answered on Sundays after the services. Recorded on 4/23/20.
May 08, 2020
Mark 12:13-27 - Jesus Contra Mundum
Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Re-read Mark 12:13-17. Jesus’ answer to the Pharisees and Herodians implies that the government - even an aggressive, pagan empire like Rome - has a legitimate place in the lives of the faithful that is to be appropriately honored as God’s ordained governing agency for the present moment. Besides paying our taxes, how else do we render honor to governing authorities (see 1Timothy 2:1-6; Titus 3:1-2)?  2) If we are to render to God what is God’s, and everything belongs to God, what does this mean for us as disciples of Christ (hint: see 8:34-38)? How does this call personally  challenge you now? How might this ultimate allegiance lead us to acts of respectful but determined “civil disobedience” as Christians?  3) Re-read Mark 12:18-27. Jesus grounds the doctrine of the resurrection in the nature of God - that is, as "the God of the living" who binds himself by covenant/promise to his people forever. How does this truth change how we negotiate our mortal fears, our personal insecurities and doubts as the people of his name?
May 04, 2020
Mark 11:27 - 12:12 - Everyday Good and Evil
In this week's sermon, Pastor James Walden takes us through another exchange between Jesus and the religious leaders in Jerusalem. Sermon Discussion Questions  1. Re-read Mark 11:27-33. The indecision of the religious leadership in answering Jesus’ direct and simple question wasn’t an instance of human ignorance. It was the evil repression of truth. Where have you experienced this? Discuss a time when your indecisiveness was a form of evasion, not ignorance. Are there areas of indecision in our lives now that may be us evading truth?  2. Re-read Mark 12:1-12. The greatest crime in human history - the murder of God, the killing of the world’s only Savior, the violent rejection of the Beloved - was committed under the leadership of the impeccably religious and lawfully credentialed rulers of Jerusalem (see more in Matthew 23:1-3, 29-39). Religion often covers  the grossest evil, as we seek to replace heaven's reign on earth with our own - and we do it “in God’s name”! Where have we seen this in history? Getting personal, in what areas of your life does Jesus need to increase, and you decrease?  3. Re-read Mark 11:18, 32; 12:12. The religious leaders feared not God but the masses, from which their authority and status were derived. Without public approval and acknowledgement, they were nothing. And this was their great evil. It led them to both dance to the popular tune of the day and at the same time despise the populace who played it. What do you fear? What are the sources of security, identity, and power you tend to worship/serve and then despise (as a fickle and merciless master)? How is serving God instead liberating
April 26, 2020
Mark 11:20-26 - How Prayer Moves Mountains in Faith
In this week's sermon, Pastor Landon Jones walks us through Jesus' teachings about faith that can move mountains. Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Christ gives a strong command to have faith in God, without having any doubt. Yet, we know there is a place for doubt, as Jude writes in his epistle, “Have mercy on those who doubt.” (Look at Jude 17-22). What is the difference between doubting in faith and doubting in unbelief? What doubts are you wrestling with that we can bring to the Lord together in prayer?  2) Prayer is an often be an elusive thing to understand how to do. How do you define prayer? What other Scriptures help inform your view of prayer? (Consider Matt. 6:9-13, John 14:13-14, 15:16, 16:23-24; 1 John 5:14) How could the Lord’s prayer (Matt. 6:9-13) give you confidence in praying in faith [The simple acronym ACTS has helped Christians to keep the Lord’s prayer in mind: Adoration (praising and  honoring God), Confession (of sins done and left undone to God); Thanksgiving (gratitude toward God for specific ways he has blessed); Supplication (asking the Lord for ourselves and others needs).]  3) Jesus teaches us in Mark 11 that Christian faith (the faith he expects from his disciples) manifests in prayer. However, we often don’t pray or turn prayer into an “email inbox” of requests before God. What is your life of prayer like? How does faith influence prayer? How does obedience influence prayer? (Consider 1 John 3:21-22) How does lack of forgiveness influence prayer? (Consider Matt. 6:14-15; Mark 11:25)
April 19, 2020
Mark 16:1-20 - Flawed and Faithful: Witnesses to the Resurrection
In this Easter sermon, Pastor James Walden walks us through the story of the resurrection of Jesus from the Gospel of Mark.   Sermon Discussion Questions  1) Holding to a high view of the Bible and yet acknowledging the imperfect copies and translations we have available to us has always been part of the church’s attempt to read Scripture faithfully. Read and discuss Augustine’s comments in a letter to his friend, Jerome (who translated the Latin version of the Bible):  ”Only to those books of the Scriptures that are now called canonical have I learned to pay such honor and respect as to believe most firmly that not one of Scriptures’ authors has erred in writing anything. If I do find anything in those books that seems contrary to truth, I decide either that the text is corrupt [i.e., there are copyists’ mistakes], or that the translator did not follow what was really said, or that I have failed to understand it.” 2) The women coming to anoint Christ’s body were not expecting any of the things they found: the stone rolled back, an empty tomb, and a young man in dazzlingly white clothes announcing Jesus’ resurrection (16:3-5a). They were alarmed (16:5b). They fled the tomb with “tremulous astonishment,” mute with fear (16:8). Far from a comfortable familiarity, everything about this first Easter was jolting, unexpected, and even terrifying. How does the resurrection astonish you, and fill you with awe, or “fear and trembling” today? How does it lead you to trust and obey Jesus as the Son of God?  3) Like the many manuscript witnesses of the New Testament documents, we bear both flawed and faithful testimony to Jesus and his resurrection. We each have our own sets of weaknesses, errors, and incomplete parts as disciples. But altogether, both as a local congregation of individual believers, as well as part of a broader network of congregations in our city, state and world, our corporate witness through God’s Spirit is powerful and true. How can we, especially during this extraordinary time, give witness to the astonishing reality of the resurrection, and the hope it offers the world?
April 12, 2020
Bonus Mini Episode - Stimulus Checks
Landon Jones and Josh Parks discuss how to steward our stimulus checks (and our money in general) to take care of our brothers and sisters and support the community.  Recorded on 4/7/20.
April 09, 2020
Small Groups in a Pandemic
Landon Jones, Josh Parks, James Walden and JayWill Wilson discuss the unique challenges and opportunities a church of small groups has during a pandemic crisis and how we engage with our church family during this time.  Recorded on 4/1/20.
April 06, 2020
Corporate Worship in a Pandemic
Landon Jones, Josh Parks, James Walden and JayWill Wilson discuss the challenges of the weekly churchwide gathering--and if such a thing can even occur--during a period of social distance.  Recorded on 4/1/20.
April 06, 2020
Church Planting in a Pandemic
Landon Jones, Josh Parks, James Walden and JayWill Wilson talk with Greg Willson, a church planter in Chorlton, England about the particular opportunities and struggles that come with planting a church in a pandemic.  Recorded on 4/5/20.
April 06, 2020
Life in a Pandemic
Chris Eckert, Landon Jones, Erik Kimrey, Josh Parks, and James Walden discuss the pandemic crisis and how the church can respond to this historic and scary moment.  Recorded on 3/18/20.
March 18, 2020